[ecis2016.org] Although real estate brokers primarily rely on their verbal communication skills, we examine why it is equally important to have written communication skills and how to improve the same
Word-of-mouth publicity plays a crucial role in the real estate brokerage business. It becomes much easier to understand, if you look at it from a buyer’s point of view. Most buyers search online for various products and services and weigh the options, based on the brand, the experience, the rating, etc., before making up one’s mind about a certain product or service. While all those tools help you to make up your mind, we are more likely to feel assured of the services of a realtor, who has been recommended by a neighbour, or a friend or relative.
You are reading: Broker’s corner: Why you must have flawless writing skills
Nevertheless, real estate brokers cannot depend solely on word-of-mouth publicity, to grow their businesses. Written communication too plays a crucial role in shaping large and medium brokerage businesses. In a fast-changing scenario, where social distancing is the new normal, because of the Coronavirus pandemic, even small enterprises and realtors have to depend on this mode of communication, for much of their publicity work.
Common errors in written communication that brokers should avoid
While real estate agents often work on improving their verbal communication, written communication skills are often ignored. This becomes evident in several forms:
- Your marketing brochure might be full of grammatical or spelling errors.
- Listings on your site are written in such a way that they seem frivolous and made-up.
- Bulk messages that you send to your customers become an example for receivers on how not to write, because of the glaring spelling errors in the text.
- In your pursuit to impress your clients, you use fancy word in your social media posts that may seem funny and have the potential to damage your reputation, considering the wide reach of social media platforms.
[ecis2016.org] Broker’s corner: How to avoid social media backlash?
Hence, it is important to remember that you can persuade a client with your verbal communication skills, only when your written communication helps you to obtain clients in a word where almost all the things that one would shop for are available online and people read about companies’ services and products online. In such a scenario, clients will not take you seriously, in case they see any deficiently in your written communication skills. There are various ways in which real estate brokers can improve their written communication.
Use the language you are comfortable with
Even though some of us might not see this as an ideal scenario, English has become the default communication language in India. For large and medium real estate brokerage businesses, any deficiency in the knowledge of this global language, is seen as unpardonable. That, however, in no way makes it incumbent on small brokers to select English as the preferred mode of communication. Using the local language has its own unique benefits, as long as the communication is flawless. In UP, Bihar and MP, for example, a large client base is Hindi-speaking. They would certainly feel more comfortable with someone dealing in that language. In Tamil Nadu, you would strike a better chord with the local people, if you kept the mode of your written communication in Tamil. Realtors who cater to a specific market, must use the local language for communication, even if they also use English.
Keep the communication crisp, simple and to the point
While attempting to impress others with euphemisms and metaphors, one often misses the whole point of written communication – i.e., to convey the message clearly, in simple words. Any slip, in a real estate transaction, might result in the buyer losing his lifetime’s savings and the realtor losing his brand name. Hence, there is little scope for anything that sounds less than genuine. As a real estate broker, you do not have the option to sound frivolous or complex. Make sure the text in your email campaigns, SMS, brochures, etc., conforms to this rule.
How to check written communication for errors
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A simple spelling error or the use of a wrong word in your social media post, could invite trolling on these platforms. Recurring episodes of this kind, could damage your reputation. Even though impeccable communication does not guarantee brilliant services, all brands providing quality services are invariably good and careful with their written communication, as well. Follow these tips:
- Read the text carefully, before sending out any written communication. There should be no spelling or grammatical errors. Use someone with impeccable language expertise, to write the communication for you. You can also make use of online tools that help you take care of this part, if needed. Note here, that these tools might not be 100% accurate in their performance. Check for their effectiveness before you start to rely completely on these tools.
- Names of people and places should be mentioned correctly with proper spellings. For example, Chhattisgarh has a double ‘h’ and a double ‘t’. Similarly, Aadhaar has two ‘a’ letters at the beginning and in the middle. If someone is named, say Neeraj, you should not spell out their name as Niraj.
- Read the text and see if the message of the communication is clear. Also get the text proof-read. It would be better, if multiple people read the text.
- Make sure the communication is being sent only to those intended. This is one of the most common mistakes made by people across businesses and could turn out to be disastrous.
Do not make exaggerated claims and use humour sparingly
Marketing is a difficult job and companies often make the mistake of exaggerating facts about their products. The client, however, would need to read through all of this, to find a reliable service provider. In such a scenario, they would certainly prefer someone who sounds genuine and simple. Instead of highlighting your services or products through your communication, do not badger your clients with self-praise.
Before trying making a joke as part of your written communication, ensure that it does not sound hurtful to any person, caste, creed or colour. Evaluate the words and make sure they do not end up hurting sentiments. Avoid dirty humour at all costs.
[ecis2016.org] Communication tips for property brokers in India
Is sending writing communication in English important for brokers?
In a country like India where each state has a local language, the English language acts as a binding tool. This is why it can be effective in increasing your reach. However, brokers can use the local language for communication in specified locations, to make it more effective.
What are the common errors of communication by real estate brokers?
Written communication errors could include grammatical and spelling mistakes, complex language, exaggeration, ill-suited humour, factual incorrectness, use of indecent language, etc.
What are effective writing skills for brokers?
For any writing to be effective, it should have a logical flow of ideas and be free of errors and unnecessary words or sentences.
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