10 Jan THE PRINCIPLES OF BUYER PERSUASION: PART 2
When it comes to persuading buyers, one need not wield the power of the stars or look for good omens. We’ve established in the first installment of this blog that selling – or persuading potential buyers to buy a property – is a science. As it is a science, persuasion is comprised of six underlying principles.*
We’ve discussed the first three as follows: reciprocation, social proof, and people and consistency. In this installment, we’ll round up the final three principles, what they mean, and how they can influence your ability to persuade buyers to seal the deal.
Principle 4: Liking
Buyers prefer to say ‘yes’ to those that they know and to those that they like.
One key ingredient in selling a property is by matching its features to the preferences of potential buyers. You’ll know that because prospective buyers are more inclined to spend more time inspecting a property that they like. This is where the value of first impressions come in. If people who drive by the property develop a positive impression from the outside, then there’s a high chance that show up for inspections. So what can you do?
The answer lies in engaging a property makeover specialist’s services. These are professionals who know how to spot the hidden gems of a property. By spotting them, they can suggest value-add improvements to make the property as appealing as possible to prospective buyers. Not only that: liking a property breeds competition. It’s a vendor’s wish for people to come over and start competing for the property.
But where does liking the Real Estate Agent come in? The answer lies on the same line: creating a positive impression the first time, having the social proof needed, and being consistent in delivering your service all contribute to prospective buyers liking an agent.
Principle 5: Authority
People follow the lead of experts because they respect authority.
Authority need not be intimidating. In fact, in the real estate scene, it is a valuable asset that helps to persuade prospective buyers to buy a property. In this context, authority is developed as a function of the following: the credibility of the property makeover specialist, the real estate agent, the property makeover company and real estate agency, the social proof awarded to all four entities, and the recommendations that all four has gathered in their experience and results.
Linked to social proof, authority is the final block needed to cement the perception of high performance. If you get highly a recommended agent to work with you on a beautifully presented property, you’ll get more chances of getting it sold, efficiently and for more. How much more if such recommendations directly came from leading figures in their own industries?
Principle 6: Scarcity
The less there is of something, the more valuable it is.
Scarcity breeds demand, and this is common following the cycle of the real estate industry. When housing supply is scarce, potential buyers view every listing as an opportunity to buy the house of their dreams. Then again, when things are scarce, the stakes are higher. This is where the concept of ingenuity comes in. From marketing the property to conducting property inspections and auctions, inventiveness differentiates the properties that get sold from those that do not. But what about the attributes of the property itself?
Undoubtedly, the property for sale can be both a means and an end. It is your primary tool to win a buyer, and selling it is your end. As a means to sell, a property makeover specialist can help identify the unique features of a property that may appeal to the most amount of prospective buyers. Often, these unique features need polishing. By polishing them, the property is set apart from the rest. This creates an impression among buyers that when they pass it on, they’re missing a huge opportunity.
While the principles enumerated in this article and the previous one offer relevant insights towards buyer persuasion, what binds them all is one thing: how the relationship of real estate professionals (the real estate agent, the property makeover specialist, the skills and trades) and the prospective buyers is nurtured from the initial contact. The human factor supporting the merits of a property matters a lot when it comes to fulfilling the goals of persuasion.
*Dr. Robert Cialdini, a Psychology and Marketing Professor at the Arizona State University, is the author of the books Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion, Yes! 50 Scientifically Proven Ways to Be Persuasive, and The Small BIG: Small changes that spark a big influence. He is the proponent of the principles of persuasion being discussed in this article.