Green with Optimism

Confidence, enthusiasm and leaving no lead unturned pays off

March 15, 2009

Richard Sackmann's sales presentation for Visionaire, a LEED-certified building, has evolved. Listen to the process that has taken place.

Click here to listen to the clip.

Category//Sales Person of the Year
Gold Winner//Richard Sackmann, Sales Associate, The Marketing Directors, New York
Price range of homes//$680,000 to $5.25 million
Net sales//25

Richard Sackmann’s philosophy is that everyone who walks into the sales office is a buyer until proven otherwise.

“Until someone says to me, 'Rich, I’m really not interested,’ I have to assume that they are just looking for a reason and a way to buy,” says Sackmann, a sales associate with The Marketing Directors in New York.

Sackmann has been licensed to sell real-estate for 10 years but only recently started in new-home sales after coming to The Marketing Directors two years ago. His first project — The Visionaire, a 36-story tower with 259 homes that opened in February 2007 — is designed to be the first LEED platinum luxury high-rise condominium project in the New York area.

Selling a very green project posed some challenges. The sales staff at Visionaire was given extensive training on green building, and Sackmann says the experience was eye opening.

“You can almost see people’s eye’s glaze over as you talk about fresh air systems and water retention systems on the roof garden,” Sackmann says.

He credits a book called “The Green Marketing Manifesto“ by John Grant for helping him understand that, initially, the primary appeal of a green building for most buyers will be its luxury amenities. “I still certainly talk about green,” says Sackmann, “but it’s a little bit less of an upfront focus: 'Oh, by the way, we provide fresh filtered air to every room in the home. Did you know that?’” He finds that as folks become more aware, buyers ask more green questions.

“[Richard] is self motivated, demonstrating a will to succeed and practicing tremendous professionalism,” says Angela Ferrara, director and vice president of sales at The Marketing Directors, in her nomination of Sackmann. “His naturally charming and engaging personality causes everyone to trust and admire him.”

“I am in the enviable position of selling homes in a building I thoroughly believe in,” says Sackmann. “My customers see my enthusiasm as genuine, and this allows me to help my customer make the decision he or she wants to make.”

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