How to Conduct a Great CRE Client Survey

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Earlier this month we surveyed our Massimo Group coaching clients, which we appropriately refer to as Massimo Members. We have surveyed our members for the past nine years, with the main objective of understanding what is working, what is valued the most and what other services are desired.

Likewise, several of our commercial real estate coaching clients (members) survey their clients to better understand how to best serve them. Over the iterations of our own member surveys and our member’s client surveys, we have found there are several key elements to insuring both a high response rate, and more importantly, receiving critical data that will assist you in servicing your clients and growing your commercial real estate business.

What is your objective?

Before you send out your client survey the number one question you must ask yourself is “what is your objective?” You need a clearly defined objective so you can craft the questions that will provide you the information you are seeking.

What questions should you ask?

If you want your survey to meet your objectives, you must ask the appropriate questions. One resource we used to better understand the questioning methodology that worked well for us was the book ASK, by Ryan Levesque.

Given our objectives (see above) we limited our survey to 12 questions. Sample questions included:

  • How long you have been a Massimo Member?
  • What program(s) have you engaged with the Massimo Group?
  • How likely is it that you would recommend the Massimo Group to a friend or colleague? (This is a CRITICAL question – see “The Ultimate Question by Frederick F. Reicheld)
  • What elements of coaching worked best for you?
  • What additional topics would you like to be added to the Massimo Group coaching programs?
  • If an inactive client, would you be interested in learning more about our new programs?

If you scan these questions, all can be modified for your personal commercial real estate practice. For example, you may consider asking:

  • How long have you been a XYZ client? This reinforces your brand and reiterates that they are your client.
  • What services do you engage in with XYZ? Using a multiple-choice format, you can show off your range of services, some of which the client may not be aware.
  • How likely is it that you would recommend XYZ to a friend or colleague? This is probably the most critical question of all – but it must be asked and analyzed correctly.
  • What additional services would be beneficial to you?
  • Would you like for us to contact you regarding….?


You must promote your survey correctly.

This is an essential piece. We leveraged emails from different team members, as well as phone calls to get our clients/Members to respond. We secured over a 50% response rate from our active members and almost a 20% response rate from our inactive clients. Response rates such as these are unheard of. You would aim for a response rate of 5 to 10 percent.

You must analyze the responses correctly.

Once you have your data, it will take some time to break it down and interpret. Obviously, the more data points the better. We used SurveyMonkey for conducting our survey and then downloaded the datafile to excel, where we scoured through 100’s of responses, and 1,000’s of data points, via excels’ pivot table feature.

Put the findings into action.

Given the number of responses, we could meet our objectives. Specifically,

  • We identified 4 elements our clients found most valuable with our coaching (diagnosing their current business, mutually identifying customized goals, introducing new approaches and holding them accountable to achieving their vision of success).
  • We identified the demographics for all three of our core programs – thus allowing us now to create targeted prospecting campaigns for these three segments of clients
  • The NPS (net promoter score) of our company. Let’s just say I am ecstatic about the results, as once again the NPS blew away the benchmarks identified.
  • The NPS score per program and per coach. Imagine if you had a better understand of which agents/team members in your office are better at producing raving fans, versus detractors. You can take this information and create training programs to learn from the best of the best.
  • Finally, we identified inactive members who want to come back and re-engage.

Client surveys are invaluable to you and your company’s growth. They need to be structured correctly and orchestrated to secure the number of quality results you need to make better decisions related to the state of your efforts and future channels to pursue.

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