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Sales Doctor: The key to winning more instructions

Dear Sales Doctor,

The biggest challenge I’m facing right now is winning more instructions. What advice do you have for my listers who are going to market appraisals and all the competition are offering fees as low as 0.75%?

The truth is, if the vendor perceives the service they receive from an estate agent to be below average, they will always pay the cheapest for the ‘below average’ service. 


Therefore, they key is to stand out and be perceived as giving a better and different service to all your competition. 

We recommend looking at every market appraisal as ‘the 3 P’s’; Pre-valuation, present the valuation and post valuation. For this article, we’ll be focusing on the pre-valuation...

Many listers feel the most important part of the valuation is showing the comparable and the price they value the vendors’ property. In our experience of helping over 250 estate agents, it’s all about ‘the first impression’. 

When that vendor first calls into your estate agency, an impression is formed in three seconds. So, the member of staff who takes that first call is the CEO of the first impression. 

Do they sound genuinely interested in the vendor and excited about the opportunity or do they sound like they’re taking a pizza order? In our experience, 90% sounds like the latter.

We have developed a 10-point structure to the call to ensure it’s a conversation, not an interrogation; it goes like this:

1. “Of course, we can help, my name is Tony Morris and who am I speaking with please?”

“John, in case we get cut off what’s the best number to reach you on?”

2. “John, can I ask, who recommended you to X agency?”

3. “Whereabouts is your property?”

“I know that street, it’s by the church.”

4. “So I can picture your property, please walk me through it as if I was walking in the front door.”

“We are really excited to come and see this; my colleague sold a three-bed detached in your area in the last fortnight and five buyers missed out, so this might be ideal for them.”

5. “What’s the reason you’re looking to sell?”

“What timescales are you working towards?”

6. “What are the three most important things to you about the estate agency you choose?”

“Which of those is the number one priority?”

7. “Aside from yourself John, who else needs to be involved in making the decision?”

8. Summarise the situation and ask: “Have I missed anything?”

9. Close for the appointment around the lister’s schedule; looking at Mike Smith’s diary, our senior valuer, he is available Wednesday or Friday this week, which works for you?

10. Collect all the contact details and exact address of property 

Now how does this structure compare to what your team are currently asking?

Before training, most our estate agency clients were sending a generic email confirming the appointment. The same as every other agent.

Remember, if you are perceived the same, why should you command a higher fee and win more instructions?

So now my estate agency clients hand deliver an A4 envelope in the colour of their brand. In that envelope, we recommend four things. 

If you’re interested in finding out what the content should be to impress the vendor than please email us on info@salesdoctors.co.uk and we’ll reveal all. 

Alternatively, call us on 020 8906 6725 and we’d be delighted to talk you through it.

*Tony Morris is managing director of Sales Doctors, an international sales speaker and best-selling author

**If you have a question for the Sales Doctor, please get in touch on press@estateagenttoday.co.uk

  • icon

    Reading the '10 point structure' plan, I was a little shocked that I should be advised to say (in point 1): “John, in case we get off what’s the best number to reach you on?”
    I'm not sure that's the sort of service I should be offering! I think there might be a word missing.


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