Knowing how to become your seller’s only option is one foolproof way to win the wholesaling game. However, how do make it happen? It all starts with what you say to the sellers the first time you speak to them!
In this episode, virtual investing coach Lauren Hardy got really micro and shared how she and her team handles the first ever conversation with prospects. Lauren’s 3-step GDP method has been her go-to strategy and she can definitely attest it works!
From asking the right discovery questions to matching people’s vibes, Lauren covered it all. So if you want to get things right during the first call, this is one episode you can’t miss!
- What GDP stands for
- What the discovery questions can help you uncover
- What her 3 goals are
- The kind of sellers you should build rapport with
- Why it’s crucial to know the seller’s pain button
- Why getting the seller to like you should be one of your priorities
- How you can get people to like you
- What mirroring is
- Why it’s important to match people’s vibes
- The kind of questions that will bring out the seller’s motivation
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Hey, what’s up guys. This is Lauren Hardy and welcome to the Wholesaling Inc Podcast. I am the newest coach to the team. I teach all things virtual and I am excited to be with you guys today. Today, it’s just going to be me, I’m going solo and I want to do a deep dive on a topic that’s super important to me and my sales team. We are going to get super micro on what I think you should say to sellers the first time you speak with them. So we are going to talk about that initial seller phone call. The first time that you pick up the phone and you call that seller after you determined they’re a lead. Now this is not a cold call, this is not a cold calling script or a cold calling discussion. This is a seller has already been identified as a lead whether they came in from direct mail or they came in from cold calling or they came in from your texting campaign, you’ve determined they’re a lead and now you are going to qualify them.
So before I get into it you guys, if you guys love this podcast as much as I do, make sure you subscribe. All right guys, let’s get going. So let’s talk about that first call. You’ve determined a seller’s a lead and now you’re going to pick up the phone and you are going to essentially qualify them. And I have a way that I look at this, there are some objectives that I want to meet with this phone call and it’s very important to me that’s why I want to get super micro about it. It is very important to me that if it’s either me or somebody on my sales team, I want them to convey that they are genuine, I want them to get the seller to trust them and I want the seller to truly believe that they are a problem solver, that we, my team is solution to their problems. A big word that comes to play here for me is loyalty. I want, by the end of this call, that the seller has some sense of loyalty to me.
And I have some tricks as to how I get there with my sellers. You see, if you do this right in the first call, you are setting the tone for the rest of your relationship with this seller. First impressions are everything and it’s really important that you set the stage with how you and the seller are going to work together. And you really want to make sure that the seller likes you so much after that first call that it gets them to stop calling other investors. I mean, that really is the goal. The goal is to form a relationship with them upfront right there, so they are not motivated to pick up the phone and call anyone else because they know that you are going to solve their problem and they know that they can trust you. So I have some words to remember. I like associating words with processes so it helps you remember things. So we’re going to talk about my goals, discovery and path, method. You can call it GDP if you want, not gross domestic product, don’t get it mixed up.
Goals, discovery, path, method. So I’m going to go into what are the three goals that you need to have? What are these objectives that you need to have in that first seller call? Then we’re going to ask the seller some discovery questions, and the discovery questions, the point of those are to help you pick the path that you are going to take that seller on. Because every seller has different problems that you need to solve and you are not going to handle each seller situation the same. You want to make sure that each seller situation is handled appropriately, so the discovery questions really help you figure out what is going on with that seller and how you can best serve them. So the three goals for me and my team is number one, you want to determine their interest in selling. What’s really important, really what I want to know is where they interested in selling prior to my outreach or post outreach?
What I mean by that is I do some lead generation, right? I maybe sent them a text message, where they already thinking about selling that home? And then they just happened to get my text message so it was this perfect timing thing, or if you’re doing direct mail, where they already thinking about selling that home, and then they got your letter in the mail and said, “Oh perfect, I’m going to give them a call?” Or was it one of those, “Well, I wasn’t really selling or thinking about selling but you sent me a text, so whatever.” Now I think it’s obvious that the latter is the less motivated seller. If we have a situation where it is the latter, where post outreach, they thought, “Yeah, maybe I’ll consider selling since you reached out to me anyway, but I really wasn’t thinking about selling beforehand.” That’s somebody that I am not going to give as much of our time.
I’m still going to give them an offer, don’t get me wrong. Everybody gets an offer, but I’m not going to give it my all. I’m not going to instruct my team to sit on the phone and talk about their vacation that they just took, or spend a ton of time building rapport. I would rather build rapport with the seller who, before they received direct mail or a text from us or a cold call from us, they already had had this idea of selling the home. Those are the sellers that I’m going to really hone in and build rapport with. So number one, determine the interest in selling, was it pre-outreach or post outreach? Okay, that’s goal number one. Goal number two, I want to determine the motivation and one word I love to use, and it helps my team remember is what is the pain button? When I say those words pain button, literally in my head I imagine this big red button that I’m going to push.
What is the seller’s pain button? Because what we want to know is how can we provide tailor made solutions to fix their problems? And I want to talk about those solutions in every conversation from here on out. There really are a handful of seller motivation issues, honestly, they all kind of fall under the same, I don’t know, five scenarios. So once you get good at problem solving, you’re able to spit those solutions out in the conversation. Every time you talk to them you’re reminded of their pain button, it’s not that you’re pushing their pain button, I don’t want it to sound like you’re doing something mean and nasty, it’s not that, it’s that you want to remind them, I’ve got the solution, I’ve got the solution.
So the way your solution is going to be different to say a seller who has a property that they inherited from their grandma, but it’s vacant, it’s not causing them much problems, versus a seller who has a nightmare tenant and the seller is stressed out and the tenant is just making their life horrible. You’re going to handle those sellers differently. You are going to talk about different outcomes, you are going to give the seller different solutions in your conversation. So it’s very important as goal number two, in that first initial call that you know what is their motivation to sell and number three, get them to like you. It sounds so elementary, but getting a seller to like you is one of my number one priorities that I tell my sales team.
There are a lot of questions that you can ask that I see a lot of other people ask sellers on the first go that I really think actually get the seller to not like you, like asking them what their mortgage balances or asking them what do they want for the property? I think people really stress about those types of questions and to me, those questions, they’re a little bit combative, they’re a little bit abrasive. Instead, I just want the seller to like me. If I have those three goals achieved, I am happy by the end of that call. So how do you get sellers to like you? What I mean by that is first of all, and maybe this is like some social skills training, there is actually a great book, it’s called How to Win Friends and Influence People. You can just look up the cliff notes on Google if you don’t want to read the whole book, but it’s got a lot of good tips. Like for example, match their vibes. Okay, the book does not say the word vibes, but I say the word vibes.
So you want to match their vibes. If the seller has this upbeat high energy and they talk really fast and they’re super chatty like me, you want to match that. You want to talk fast, you want to be chatty, you want to be a conversationalist. You want to ask them about the trip they just went on to Mexico or that dog that’s barking in the background, what kind of dog is that and you want to bring up that you have a dog too, and you love going to the dog park every Thursday, where you meet up with a bunch of dog enthusiasts, right? That is how you would handle a seller that has my type of energy or vibes, but not everybody’s like us, and believe it or not, I’m actually very good at mirroring. So when I’m talking to somebody who has lower energy, they talk a little bit slower, I match that. I talk slower, I slow down. I ask them questions slowly but to the point, I don’t overshare.
I maybe get the vibe that they’re a bit of a private person, so I don’t ask them, what kind of dog do you have in the background, I match them. That is so important because people like people who they can relate to most importantly, so that’s the first thing, match their vibes. Second way to get them to like you. I always write one to two things memorable about the seller in my CRM that I can bring it up later. And these could be all sorts of things. I mean, it’s funny the things that I’ll write down. I will write down how many kids they had if they mentioned that they had children, I’ll say, “Oh, how many kids do you have? I have two kids too,” so I mention many kids they have, or if they did something in a certain profession, they might bring up, “Oh, I’m a CPA.” “Oh, that’s funny, my dad was a CPA.” So I’ll write down his name and that he was a CPA and then maybe sometime around April, you bring up, “Man, it’s tax time, are you ready?”
I love bringing up personal details about them because they will go, “Wow, I can’t believe she remembered that. I can’t believe she remembered that I told her I broke my leg.” I have sellers in my CRM that we’ve been talking to for a year, two years and we will have things in our CRM that stay there and they will be so impressed that we remember these details about them. Another way to get them to like you, and I actually got this from a cold caller that I had in house, he was really good. I mean, this was one of the most skilled cold callers I’d ever hired and he would always use their name. I used to say that he almost sounded like one of those 911 operators the way he would talk, because he would say their name a lot, he always repeated their name. So use their name when you talk to them, first of all, it’ll help you remember their name, which is important, you don’t want to mess that up, right?
But also, it helps it just feel personal, people like hearing their name, so if you do these three things, it’s pretty likely that the seller is going to like you and prefer you over the competition. So you guys know what the three goals are, and you know that I ask discovery questions to figure out more about what path I’m going to take. So here is some examples of discovery questions, this is what I’m talking about. So with goal number one, determine their interest in selling. I want to know where they interested before they got some marketing from me or after? So I ask them really simple questions like, “What’s got you interested in selling?” Or I ask them, this one I really like, “What was your plans with this property when you originally purchased it?” Those are really interesting open ended questions that really get them to talk.
The second one with determining motivation, that can get personal, right? Sometimes it’s hard to get that out of a seller. I really hate the question, I hate this question. It makes me cringe when I see on sample scripts, “So why are you selling?” that is the most abrasive way to ask that question, please don’t ask it like that. And you can ask, like what I just said, “So what were your plans with this property before you got that text message from me?” Open ended questions usually will bring out the motivation. Now sometimes if you’re building rapport with them, you’re asking those open ended questions, like what’s got you interested in selling, or what was your plans with the property before you got that text from me? Other ways you can say it is, “Is there anything else going on with the house that we should know about,” or you’re just playing off building rapport, right?
Most of the time the motivation will come out just through the conversation. If you’re just having a basic conversation and building rapport, the seller will say what’s going on and why they were selling. But if they’re still being really tight lipped about it, and they’re not really giving you any indication, sometimes the motivation is within the condition of the property. So it’s not that there’s some kind of situation, but it’s that the property has tons of repairs and they don’t have the money to fix it or they don’t feel like fixing it, they don’t have the time, they don’t know contractors, whatever it is, maybe they’re not in the area, so sometimes it’s the condition. So if you still haven’t gotten it out of them, what was their motivation, go to asking them condition questions. Once you ask these discovery questions, you’re going to get an idea of what path you should take with them.
So just make sure that your path that you choose eliminates their pain and you remind them of this pain constantly with every further conversation or communication you have with them. You want to make sure you remind them that you understand what their problem is and that you have the solution for it. I love going out in the world and seeing how other sales people or other professionals in other industries utilize their interpersonal skills or their sales skills. Sometimes they don’t even necessarily know they have sales skills, but I, being somebody who’s studied sales, I love paying attention to people that just have a natural knack for it professionally and hearing their approach and saying, “How can I apply that to my business?” Because some people are just naturals at this, it’s not even that they’ve put any thought to it.
They might not have even gone to one sales seminar or read one book about sales, but they just have it naturally. And I love meeting these people and just taking down what I thought worked for them. I’ve got a story to illustrate that this whole goals and discovery questions that led to a path, but it had nothing to do with real estate in fact, it was actually in the medical field. So doctors are often salespeople if you think about it, they really do have to sell themselves. I mean, you hear, “Oh, that doctor didn’t have very good bedside manner,” right? Well, those doctors could be the most brilliant, intelligent people who really do have the capability of healing their patient, but because their bedside manner is so poor, they get horrible reviews, they get patients that leave them. I had a personal story of me looking for a doctor and I found this doctor that had just the best bedside manner.
And I mean, you had thought that this guy had trained in sales because he used the goals, discovery, and path method that I’m talking about when he was working with me. The story is, maybe you guys don’t know this about me, I don’t really put it out there very often, but I have a thyroid disease and I have hypothyroidism and I was diagnosed probably seven years ago. It was after my daughter was born and it was very well managed. I was doing fine for many years, I was on a very low dose of medication. Part of thyroid disease is that you do have to take a thyroid hormone for basically the rest of your life. There’s pretty much no chance I’m ever going to get off of that and it’s just supplementing a hormone that my body does not produce on its own. It causes a lot of problems when it’s not managed correctly, but as long as I was taking my medication every day, I was fine, I was not very symptomatic until I was.
So I went on about five, six years totally fine on a very low dose of the medication. And suddenly, I mean, it felt like it was suddenly, but now I look back realizing it wasn’t so sudden but I started getting symptoms. The first, most noticeable one was I put on about six pounds in one day, I literally got on the scale, and I weigh myself pretty regularly because part of hypothyroidism is weight gain and that is usually the first indication that you’ve got a problem with your medication or your thyroid levels are dropping is because you gain weight very suddenly, that’s just signal number one. So I noticed I weighed myself that morning and gained six pounds out of nowhere and I was like, “Well, that’s weird.” It wasn’t like I’d eaten more the days before or anything, so that was pretty shocking, I’ve never gained weight that quickly before.
And I let it go, I also started getting stomach issues, really, really bad stomach issues and a whole other mess of symptoms really came on like a wave after that. It wasn’t until I lost a significant amount of my hair that I was like, “Okay, it’s definitely my thyroid, I need to get into a doctor.” So I went to my primary care doctor and usually primary care can handle it. They just do a blood test and they increase your hormone dosages. They did that, they did my blood, they increased my dosage and my levels got even more wonky after that. My blood just did not test right and now it was just becoming worse and worse and they put their hands up in the air, were not really willing to help me anymore and said, “You have to see an endocrinologist or specialist,” they didn’t really know what to do with me.
So I was on the hunt at this point, it’s been now months I was dealing with this because part of it was I put it off, I just didn’t think it was that big of an issue until it really was and then I could not find an endocrinologist that would get me in. So I finally found a good endocrinologist through Yelp actually, this guy had really good reviews, right? So you got to think bedside manner, okay? This guy had the best reviews. I actually had other endos recommended to me, but their reviews were not very good and one of the things was poor bedside manner. This guy had amazing reviews, I thought, “You know what? I’m going to check him out first.” And I am so glad I did. So here’s what he did, I remember the first meeting with him. Now think of it like first sales call, it was the first appointment with him. He hadn’t really retained me as a patient yet.
And I mean, it could have just been a consultation, never go to him again. So the first thing he did is I could tell he had some goals, his goals in that first appointment was he wanted to retain me as a patient. And the way to do that was figuring out what were my most crucial health problems that we needed to fix first? So he was asking me a lot of discovery questions. He was asking me all about the areas that he’s aware of thyroid that causes problems. He goes, “How’s this? How’s that?” And he’s taking it all down, but what was most important to me and I think what touched me the most is he wanted to know what was most important to me to fix first. And what made that different was because as a medical professional, he might’ve looked at some of my issues and said, “Actually this should be first,” but instead he wanted to know what was actually mentally getting me down the most.
And what was mentally getting me down the most was actually not what was most important, what was most important was actually some of the hormonal issues that this was causing, but it was the weight I gained. So what was most important to me was the fact that I was waking up every day and beginning to not recognize myself, it was really hard. And he, with his discovery questions figured out that the most important thing for me was I wanted to just return back to looking the way I used to look. And unfortunately though for me, he actually said that that was the last thing that was going to get fixed. The thing with hormones is you have to take it one step at a time, and there were bigger issues that needed to get fixed first. But what he did for me, and I can’t tell you enough, the amount of trust and loyalty I have to that doctor was he reiterated my pain.
He said, “I can tell this is making you very miserable. You gained weight and you don’t know why, you eat healthy yet you’re still gaining weight. And you’ve lost your hair and I know, I know thyroid problems cause hair loss, it’s not in your head, you have lost hair. You probably feel terrible every day.” I mean, he just reiterated everything that I was going through and I mean, he has experience, he’s talked to hundreds of patients that have had the same issues, so he knew exactly what to say that really described my problems. And then he said, “Don’t I worry, I’m going to fix you.” And that brought tears to my eyes. I literally cried in that appointment because it’d been months of doctors saying, “Don’t know really what to do with you,” just having no answers and feeling like it was hopeless.
So when he reiterated my pain buttons and he looked at me and said, “Don’t worry, I’m going to fix you.” I did not feel the need to call another doctor, I immediately was loyal to him and also I saw his kindness and how genuine he was. I love this guy so much I literally want to send him a Christmas gift. I’ve given him a glowing review on Google, on Yelp and I tell everyone I know who is diabetic or has any kind of endocrinology need about this guy, I am obsessed. And that right there in that story is what I want a seller to say about you guys. I want you guys to deliver that level of service to every single seller you speak to. In that first call, you need to deliver that type of service. And you know what’s funny? Is it really doesn’t take that long. You can achieve this in a 10 minute phone call.
If you become efficient with the way you speak and you just put those three goals in front of you, so you are reminded of what they are and you put the discovery questions underneath those goals so you have two or three that you can quickly look at really quick if you get a little tongue tied and you get those answers, pick out a couple of memorable things about the seller that you can build rapport on, that are maybe a little personal, you’re matching their vibes. You can achieve that level of service in a 10 minute phone call and as you determine throughout that phone call the motivation of that seller, and you’re just going to get a feeling. Some sellers are hotter than others, all right? Some you feel might be wasting your time a little bit and then the other ones you’re like, “This is my seller, we are going to do a deal. I am going to help this person.” You will spend more time with them.
And I want you to spend more time with that type of stuff. I hope that you guys really feel clear about the goals and my discovery and the path. If you guys loved this episode, let me know, follow me on Instagram, share the episode. I hope you guys got something out of it. It is my goal with every piece of content that I put out that you guys have at least one piece of practical advice that you can take with you to make your business better. And I know I gave you a lot of practical advice in this one, so please do me a favor and share it with the world. And most importantly, if you guys want to grow your wholesaling business in virtual markets, I am obsessed with being virtual.
I’m the virtual coach here at Wholesaling Inc, so all things virtual, that’s my jam. So check me out, I’ve got a coaching program at www.virtualinvestingmastery.com. It’s an amazing program and I cannot tell you how excited I am. My students are crushing it in their virtual markets. I’m biased, but no, it really is awesome. So I would love to have you guys in my group, check me out. And again, thank you so much for tuning into this podcast. We love hearing and seeing that you guys are listening, so please share it to the world. Thank you.