Selling the dream

Selling the dream is a term used for a salesman that wants to show the best aspects of what he is selling. Another term is, pie in the sky. I don’t do either.

I learned something very valuable the first month I sold hotels and I have used this for 32 years. I always start with the bad news and what is wrong with the asset and the problems it presents. I don’t know any other way to present a deal. I refuse to just talk about how great everything when it’s not. Tell them the bad news and if they still want to hear the upside, give that to them as well.

I don’t do because it makes people trust you, but that is what always happens. Buyers are so used to a broker only showing the good parts that it takes them back when a broker tells them the bad without them having to find out on their own. When I meet with a buyer at a hotel it is usually with the hotel general manager. They are programed to show all the good things about their hotel so before we even start, I look at the general manager (in front of the buyer) and tell him to start with the worst rooms and the problem areas. It always stuns the general manager. In real estate the worst things to happen is for a buyer to find the bad aspects and tell you what is wrong.  It makes you look bad, and it never goes well. By telling them the bad news first, it takes that off the table so when he sees the bad rooms, bad roof, bad kitchen etc., it is not as much of a shock as if he found it first.

There are hotel brokers that have made a good living only showing the good things about a hotel but they don’t have many repeat clients because of it. I prefer to have long term clients that trust me because as weird as it may sounds, I would want to know the bad things first if I was the buyer and I prefer to treat people like I would want to be treated. I think I read that somewhere in the good book. KT

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