There are few business plans as lucrative as obtaining and selling billboard groundleases and permits to competitors. The financial risk is near zero, and the profits can be in the five figures. The only reason that every man, woman and child in the US is not doing this is because 1) they do not know the opportunity exists or 2) they do not know how to do it. While learning how to find billboard locations is fairly complicated and takes up about 100 pages of my book, let's go over the right method to sell a billboard location, once you have obtained one. Unless you market it properly, any lease and permit you successfully achieve will never reach its true potential.
Here are the steps to marketing and selling a billboard location:
Make sure your lease is valid.
The first inclination of a competitor upon being offered a billboard lease for sale is to go around you and try to cancel your lease and sign one up himself with the same landowner. To protect yourself from this attack, make sure that the lease is fully executed and has all attachments. Also, make sure that you have paid the landowner some type of money to bind the lease – even if it is only $ l00. In many states, a lease is not binding unless there has been some type of consideration given, and accepted, in cash. It is money well spent to have an attorney read your lease one more time before you put it out to market, to make sure that there are no mistakes you did not catch.
Make sure your permit is valid.
Before you even think of marketing a lease for sale, be sure to have a valid right in hand. Even if you have a valid lease, a competitor could still "jump" your permit and get a lease with a neighbor. The right needs to be in your hand, no "in the mail". And make sure that you have obtained every right you need. In some areas, you need both a state and city permit – so make sure you have both. And make sure that all of the supportive information you submitted on the permit is accurate (engineering, sign location, size, etc.), because the time to fix any inaccuracies is not when you have it on the market.
Make sure to remove any obstructions to the sign in advance.
If you have received permission to remove any visibility obstacles from the landowner or neighbors, do so before you market the lease for sale. Otherwise, it will not show as well to a buyer, who may not be able to visualize the clean up of the visibility. Further, an undesirable competitor may try and screw you over with the neighbors, and then you will not be able to make the necessary corrections.
Make sure that you have included everyone in your prospect list.
Do not second guess which billboard companies might be players for your lease. You can never tell what direction some guys are taking their outdoor businesses. I was shocked once on some leases, that the high bidder was a small time buy with about five signs. However, he was particularly wanted to grow, and was willing to take some financial risks to do so. Your prospect list should be everyone who owns one sign in your market, as well as anyone else you have heard of who does not even have one sign yet, or is outside your market and wants to enter it.
Be easy to buy from.
Being difficult and moody may work for entertainers, but has no place in billboard lease negotiations. You do not have to use theatrics to get what you want. Your key driver needs to be that phantom competitor who really wants your sign, to use as a negotiating tool. You need to create a sense of urgency like the location is really hot, even if it is not.
Other than that one ruse, you need to always return calls the same day you receive them, mail out requested information as quickly as you can, and be your regular likable self. Do not forget that there will be other leases down the road, and you will have to work with these same people, so do not burn any bridges.
If you follow these four steps, you're able to have a successful experience selling a billboard is almost certainly a given, and will whet your appetite for more leases to sell. Remember that win / win negotiating and deal making makes everyone want to do it again and, with such a small sea of players, that's an important feeling to maintain.
Source by Frank Rolfe