Getting a better connection with clients

Connecting with clients

Ever wonder why you and a particular client didn’t connect? Do certain client types drive you crazy, but you just don’t know why? The answer may be in recognising whether you (and your clients) are visual, auditory, or kinaesthetic, says psychology professor and top real estate coach Bernice Ross.

“Psychologists have demonstrated that we use all three modalities (sight, hearing, and touch) when we process information, but that one modality is usually dominant”, she says.

For those who are visual, how things look is most important. You can recognise a visual person by their quick rate of speech and their attention to being colour coordinated.

By contrast, auditory individuals are concerned about how things sound, and you can recognise them primarily by how they use their voice – they are often quite dramatic in their style of speaking.

Kinaesthetics, meanwhile, place great emphasis on how things feel and their speech patterns are slow and deliberate.

Writing for, Prof Ross says it is important for agents to know about these stylistic differences, because when there is a mismatch in styles, distrust is created and you no longer operate at peak effectiveness.

“For example, a fast-talking visual will go absolutely bonkers working with a slow-moving, slow talking, thoughtful kinaesthetic client who cannot articulate what is wrong with the property.

“On the other hand, the kinaesthetic client may well lose trust in the visual agent because he or she feels that the visual’s rate of speech is ‘pushy’.

“Similarly, a visual agent who calls an auditory client about a great looking contemporary with a breath-taking view will probably receive a lukewarm response, as will the kinaesthetic agent who is excited about the warm and cosy home with all these great little nooks and crannies.”

However, she says, an agent who tells an auditory client how the agents in his office are talking about what a great buy this quiet property is, and how his friends will be talking about what terrific property he bought, will probably have a highly motivated client.

In other words, it is well worth identifying what type of client you have and then learning to speak their “language”, as follows:

Visuals will use and respond to words like “look”, “picture”, “light”, “bright”, and will often go in search of a home with a view. They prefer face-to-face and written communications rather than phone calls, and may be bad at remembering anything you tell them. Rather write it down.

Auditory people will use and respond to words like “I hear”, “sounds like”, “tell”, and will usually prefer a home in a quiet location. Their preferred communication mode is obviously verbal (phone rather than text or email), and you should not count on them to read sales documentation carefully. Rather take the time to verbally go through contracts with them.

Kinaesthetics use and respond to words such as “I feel”, “warm”, “comfortable”, “roomy”, and generally want a home that they feel has a good atmosphere. It takes time to build trust and rapport with them, and you need to respect that their feelings will ultimately guide their decision making. They will take their time with documents, and you need to make sure every detail is correct.


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