No matter how good you are at putting deals together, it won’t do you any good unless you get them signed up and finished. In this Billboard Mastery podcast we’re going to review the tricks and concepts that will help you have a higher rate of closing on your billboard deals.
Episode 41: Closing Deals Transcript
Webster's Dictionary defined closing as bringing to an end. However, what we'll be talking about on closing today means a new beginning. This is Frank Rolfe with the Billboard Mastery podcast. We're gonna talk about closing deals, trying to get someone to actually sign the document, because until they sign the document, you don't have much. So what does it mean when you say closing? What is that defined as? Well, it means doing the steps necessary to wrap things up, to actually get the person, whatever the party may be, to commit, to sign the document, to sign the ground lease for your sign, to sign the ad lease to rent the sign. And why is it so important? Well, the problem is so many people have great talents, sales, and negotiating, but they're not very good at closing, so as a result, they waste a lot of time, they get almost down to the one-yard line, like football but they can't ever score. And as we all know, if you watch your team on a Sunday and they lose miserably, and it's really tantalizing if they got down and almost scored 44 times, but they never went in the end zone once. Didn't do any good at all, right? Didn't get any score.
So closing is really very, very important to your career in Billboard investing. So let's go over some of the standard closings, why they work, and it'll all make sense in the end. So let's assume that you're trying to build a sign on somebody's property, so what you would normally do is, if you can, meet them out there at the property and then start off the conversation with, "You know, let me show you where it's gonna go," and walk over, and show them the spot, show them where you're gonna drill the hole, explain how you're gonna bring the sign in, what the access is gonna be for it, and then say, "You know, let's go ahead and get this thing signed up and get it going." Or let's say you're gonna go ahead and buy the sign from someone who owns the sign, then you say, "Okay, well, next steps are gonna be I'm gonna go out there and get a new sign face made, start running the ad space, do a little inspections to make sure the safety is all good, and so let's get that going and sign right here." Or you're trying to rent the ad space, so you say to them, "Okay, well, now what are you thinking as far as the ad copy? Here are some ideas I had. And oh yeah, let's go ahead and get this thing signed so we can get that artwork started."
What have I done in all three cases? What I'm doing is I'm pointing the person to the future, because if I talk the future and they talk the future, then in their mind, they've already signed, they've already agreed. Car dealers do the same thing. They like to show you the car that's for sale, they show you the interior of the car, and then they say things like, "So what do you want to buy for the mats of the car, I'll throw some in." They wanted to get it where you always are mentally have done it, that way your brain doesn't push back as much if you've mentally already committed, then you start getting comfortable with it. If I say to someone, "Here's where the pole goes, and here's what we're gonna do," Well, they're already thinking like, they signed it and they're starting to visualize it, and get comfortable with the whole idea. It's really hard though to get people to go out of their comfort zone, that's the case.
It's hard to get them to first dive into the pool. Now once you're in the pool, it's all fun, but that initial first steps, that's where there's the most hesitation 'cause they think, "Oh, I don't wanna get in the pool, maybe it's cold and whatever." Sometimes you have to push them in the pool to get there, but the key is if you don't set in motion the mechanics of closing, it will ever happen. If I go out and talk to the person about it, "Hey, put a sign on your property. It'd be great, wouldn't it?" "Yeah, it's great." "And get you some money." "Oh, that's great." But if I don't actually get you to sign the agreement, I wasted my time. And people will talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and not take the action step, because it gets them out of the comfort zone. So really, closing is all about getting people over whatever it is that's holding them back from doing what you want to be done.
So it's your job to basically guide them through the process mentally that it's okay to do it, it's okay to sign it, it's okay to erect the sign in this corner of your property, and if you have the confidence, if you seem like, "Okay, this is a good idea," people will typically go along with you. They look all the time to the sales person or the land lease person or whatever role you're running for the moment, they always look to you for affirmation if it's good or bad. It seems odd because you wouldn't think people would, but that's how it works. Have you ever been to a store that sells clothing or something, and people will ask the sales person, "So, you know, does this look good on me?" Well, of course they're gonna say, "Yeah, it looks fantastic on you," but it seems weird that that's the person you'd ask. Wouldn't you ask someone who has no affiliation with the sale at all? Well, I think I would, maybe another customer standing around, "Hey, excuse me. How do I look in this?" "Oh, you look terrible."
But no, instead they ask the very person that is the most unusual to ask, and that's the person who's actually doing the sales, and when you are trying to build a sign or buy a sign or rent a sign, that's actually how the priority level works. The bottom line to it all is that closing is not hard once when you've done it a few times. The most important thing to remember of a good closer is the good closer makes the person comfortable with the idea, makes them feel that it's a positive step for them to do it, and they get them thinking, thinking into the future, the next steps after they do it, because once someone visualize what they're doing, once they visualize that next step, they grow ever more comfortable with it, and they will let you kind of run with that narrative and you kind of guide them on the journey.
But the key item is you've gotta get them into the end zone, and to get them there, you sometimes have to have them already mentally imagining how wonderful it will be when they get to the end zone and they have the celebration dance. This is Frank Rolfe the Billboard Mastery podcast. I hope you enjoyed this. Talk to you again soon.