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BizTrends 2018

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Go out and meet window browsers

It never ceases to amaze me that estate agents, prepared to pay considerable sums renting high-profile premises, do not capitalise on this by "cultivating" the window shoppers who stop to read the housing advertisements on display.
Certain Rawson franchises will confirm that their decision to rent expensive premises in shopping centres and malls with high foot traffic results in them attracting many clients who came for other purposes, i.e.. not to sell, buy or rent property. In my experience the agent who takes the trouble to walk outside and engage the window browser in conversation very often finds that he ends up with a new client, if not immediately, then one or two months later.

Way back in 1972, I took the trouble to move from my desk to talk to a window browser. That new contact was so impressed by this initiative that he kept in touch with me thereafter and he has become a regular business associate, doing a number of successful business deals together. Tony Clarke, now MD of the Rawson Property Group has also testified that his very first sale came about as a result of engaging a window browser in conversation.

Excellent prospects over holiday season

Over the holiday season the chances of picking up new clients through cultivating window browsers are always excellent - and I am firmly against the practice adopted by some estate agents of closing their premises for the Christmas/New Year period. If agencies are short staffed during this time, they should, consider employing a university student on vacation or study leave to sit in the office and to get up and talk to window browsers if and when they appear.

Over the recent holiday season, the group's franchises in Bloubergstrand, Strand, Muizenberg, Yzerfontein and Hermanus all did particularly well as a result of keeping their offices open.

About the author

Bill Rawson is chairman of the Rawson Property Group.