Weekly Objective: Embrace the idea that in order to be successful in real estate you must be constantly networking! Unlike traditional 9 to 5 jobs it is important to realize that some of your best income opportunities will be derived from the social situations you are actively engaged in such as kids sporting events, community involvement, church, hobbies, etc.
This week’s plan:
Monday: Understanding the “Givers Gain” philosophy.
Tuesday: Meet someone new!
Wednesday: Networking Groups
Thursday: Social Groups, Volunteering, Church Groups
Friday: Client Parties
Monday Objective: Understanding the Givers Gain Philosophy
When I first got into real estate I joined a networking group called BNI and one of the 1st principles I learned from this group was a philosophy called “Givers Gain.” This concept is based upon the law of reciprocity, the law of giving and receiving. For some reason this concept really resonated with me. I began by identifying all of the small business owners I had a relationship with such as my dentist, accountant, tennis instructor, family doctor, insurance agent, plumber, landscaper etc. and consciously began sending them referrals. Each time I did I made sure I called the small business owner to let them know I had referred them and to be expecting a call from my client and to take extra care of them. What happened after that was incredible. The referrals coming back to me exploded. These business owners could see how I was trying to help their business and they wanted to return the favor. The key to making this system work is to pick up the phone and let your small business owner know that “YOU” are responsible for the referral. If you just give a name and a number chances are your client won’t mention you and the benefit of the referral is lost.
- Identify relationships you have based upon the attached list of industries and compile a list of business you feel confident in referring.
- Watch Growing Professional Referral Partnerships in Real Estate:
- Customize the following script to use as you follow up after sending a referral:
SCRIPT FOR FOLLOWING UP AFTER REFERRING A CLIENT
“Hi __________ (business owner), I’m John Smith with Silvercreek Realty Group and I just gave your contact information to some clients of mine that need _______________ (a new roof, electrical work, a house cleaner or etc.). Here is their contact information so that you can reach out to them as well. (after they thank you, continue with . . .) I’d also like to continue to refer clients your way in the future too. In fact, I am in the process of contacting various businesses that I can refer to my clients and include on a list of preferred business & service providers to give to them. I would also include this list on my real estate page. Would you be interested in being included?” (If yes, continue . . .) “Great! I looking to develop these professional referral partnerships to help grow each others’ businesses, so if I continue to refer clients to you, would you be willing to refer your clients & friends that are looking to buy or sell a home to me? (If yes, continue . . .) Excellent! So it looks like you already owe me one! (in a jokingly serious tone) I’m not kidding, you had better get on it so that I have to keep sending business your way in return! Does this sound like a good plan to you?
Tuesday Objective: Meet Someone New!
For me, one of the things that seems to work well is handing out my card to everyone I meet. I have handed out cards in every situation, at church, at the bank, at the gas station, in the grocery store, in other words literally everywhere. If you are shy and/or afraid to approach people you have to force yourself to get over it. I tend to say hello to a lot of people and if I say hi and they engage me in conversation I just say ‘let me give you my card’, if they say they already have a house I tell them to consider buying investment property or pass it on to somebody else. I have had people call and say ‘you probably don’t remember me, we met at the gas station and you gave me your card, I need to sell my house’ and I have sold their house or sold them a house as the case may be most of the times both. Try to set a goal to meet 5-10 people a week.
Here’s a Tip: Wear your Name Tag! Don’t be a secret agent! Not every agent is fond of name tags, however. Consumers seem to perceive people with name tags as more approachable than others, proponents of name tags say. And if a name tag identifies someone as a real estate agent, consumers who are curious about the market or considering buying or selling a home may be tempted to strike up a conversation. People always ask me, ‘How’s the real estate market?’ or ‘So, you’re in real estate’ then I take it from there.
- Study 17 Ways to Network Away: https://www.cio.com/article/3219704/careers-staffing/how-to-network-17-tips-for-shy-people.html#slide1
- Go to http://www.boisechamber.org and check out their Chamber Events. These are great opportunities to expand your sphere and make important connections in the valley.
Wednesday Objective: Explore joining a networking group.
The real question about joining a networking group is what is the return on investment of your time? In order to have a networking group pay off you need to establish yourself as the go to real estate expert. If participating in a networking group is interesting to you give it a solid 6 months. Each member of the group you belong to should be an A+ referrer. Each member of the group should refer 1 closing per year. Assess the culture of the group. If the group is genuinely sharing business and interacting than then investment can be well worth the time. If not and the culture of the group is one of waiting for referrals then the group might not be as powerful.
How can you add value to other group members?
- Do video reviews of other members on Facebook or other social media outlets.
- Send referrals! This goes back to the “Givers Gain” philosophy.
- Research various local networking groups. Pick one and check it out!
- Watch “The perfect elevator pitch” and develop your own unique elevator pitch! So that you are ready to sell yourself in front a networking group.
Thursday Objective: Social Groups, Volunteering, Church Groups
Social Group: Another great way to increase your sphere is to join a Social Group checkout https://www.meetup.com.
Volunteer and Church Group: In addition to the good you can do for your community, volunteering and serving in your church is a great way to get to know new people, many of which may have deep roots in your community. Check around for volunteer opportunities at local churches, food pantries or community centers. There’s nothing quite like doing good while increasing your client list. Be sure to promote your volunteering by posting updates to your social media. Keep in mind that the more attention you bring to a particular cause or charity, the more support they will get.
- Check out www.meetup.com and www.justserve.org – find a group or service opportunity that interests you.
- Attend a meeting and see if it’s a good fit.
- Practice your elevator pitch and be prepared to share it without thinking!
Friday Objective: Learn how to have a successful client appreciation party
If you’re in the real estate industry, and you’re not doing client appreciation parties, you are missing out on a golden opportunity to generate repeat and referral business and to connect with your clients.
You’re going to want to do at least 2, ideally 3-4, client appreciation parties every single year. If you do this process over and over and over again, you’re only going to get better and only going to have more impact on your business which will lead to more repeat-referral clients.
STEPS TO A SUCCESSFUL CLIENT APPRECIATION PARTY
1) PLAN AND PROMOTE
You need to plan this out AT LEAST 2 months in advance. I would recommend at least 3 months in advance, but at minimum, 2 months in advance, because you want to have time to promote this. If you promote it, people are going to show up, but if you try to pull something off in 2 weeks, people already have stuff planned. They already have stuff booked, and if you don’t give yourself time to plan and promote, less people are going to show up than they would if you gave yourself the time to do that.
2) SEND INVITES
Once you have the time, now you need to make calls, send save-the-dates, send emails, or send video invites. It could be as simple as sending a thing out that says, “hey! save the date. We’ll send you more information, but block this date out on your calendar. We’re throwing a bash! There will be food, fun, and festivities, so make sure you’ve got it blocked on your calendar.“
Just remember: the more you reach out, the better the experience is going to be, and the more people are going to show up.
Real quick: let’s talk worst case scenario – what happens if you do all of this and nobody shows up? Did you lose? No, because what were you doing? You were making contact with your past clients, your sphere of influence, and you were building that relationship. They won’t know if nobody shows up. Remember, if they don’t show up, they don’t know who’s not there. So if nobody shows up and all you did was make a hundred calls to connect with your database, what are they going to feel? They’re going to feel gratitude, like “Wow! That was really nice that Travis was doing that. I can’t make it, but man, that’s awesome! Maybe I’ll make it to the next one.“
You’re still building your relationship, staying top of mind, and connecting with your database, your past clients, and your sphere of influence. There’s no loss in the situation. Even if only 25% of the people show up, you’ve still won, because you connected with what? 100% of the people in your database. Most people wonder “well, what do I say when I call my database? What do I say when I’m reaching out to my sphere or my past clients?” This is a really easy thing to do – invite them to a party. It’s a simple way to connect.
3) KEEP IT INTIMATE
If you’re worried about the number of people that show up because you only have 150 people in your database, keep it to an intimate dinner of 25 people. Do you think you can get 25 people of your 150 people in the database to show up for an intimate dinner? Of course you can! If you keep it intentionally intimate, what you’re doing is you’re making sure that it’s going to feel full, and if only 20 people show up, it’s still going to feel intentional. It’s still going to feel like this is what it was supposed to be.If only 10 people show up to the dinner, all you have to say is, “this was supposed to be an intimate dinner for really the top referring clients and the top clients of this last year, and I’m so grateful that you guys could make it because you 10 are the 10 most important clients that I had last year.” It’s all about how you market it.
4) PLAN IT AROUND ANOTHER EVENT
This is what most of our clients will choose to do for their first event. They do it around Halloween and they do a pumpkin patch type of thing. They say, “There’s going to be a lot of people at the pumpkin patch, right? There’s already stuff going on like corn mazes, hayrides and face painting, so what if instead of planning it around ourselves, we do it at the pumpkin patch? We’re going to give away pumpkins to the first 50 people that show up and we’re going to have face painting, bouncy castles and hayrides, and we’re going to pay for all of that for everybody that shows up.”
Also, there’s going to be other people at that pumpkin patch at the same time that are not your clients. So number 1, you’re getting exposure to people that aren’t your clients. And number 2, when your clients show up, they’re going to have NO IDEA that all those other people at the pumpkin patch aren’t there to see you. There’s just going to think, “Oh my gosh, look at all the clients that Travis has! This is amazing!!”
You could do it around Santa photo days, baseball games, or other sporting events, because they have NO IDEA how many other people are there to see you and how many other people are there to see whatever else is going on. It’s a great way of creating the appearance of a fuller event.
5) TELL PEOPLE TO INVITE THEIR FRIENDS
This is SO critical. It’s a great way to blow up the number of people that are going to be there and to increase the number of referrals you get. Don’t just invite your past clients. Don’t just invite your sphere of influence. Say “Hey, do me a favor. Bring people! You’re welcome to bring whoever you want. All I ask you to do is just RSVP so we know what sort of numbers to expect.” When you do this, you’re increasing the reach that you start to have, and you know who people tend to bring? Their friends who are thinking of buying or selling a house. It’s so funny. They all do this. They’re going to come up to you and say “psst! Travis! Don’t tell them I told you, but the reason I brought Mary and Joe is they’re thinking of selling their house this spring, and I wanted them to meet you, so don’t tell them I told you, but I’ll make the introduction!“
The people that you’re getting exposed to are people that are homeowners oftentimes, or that are thinking of buying, or that are thinking of listing their house. So the more they bring their friends, the more comfortable they’re going to feel, the more likely they are to show up, and the bigger your reach starts to expand.
Let’s be honest, just straight up calling people and asking for a referral is kind of awkward, right? There’s great ways of doing it, we’ve given you scripts to do that, but this is a really great way of doing it. If your clients bring friends, and their friends bring friends, or they bring friends, you didn’t even have to ask for a straight-up referral. It’s a GREAT, great way of getting the numbers up AND getting repeat and referral business from it.
6) MAKE IT AUDIENCE AND CLIENTELE APPROPRIATE
Look, if you work with a lot of families, don’t do something that’s “adults only”. Just think about all the people that now have to worry about childcare. Or if you do a big family event, but you serve primarily young or older people that don’t have families or kids, don’t do the pumpkin patch because they’re like, “Yeah, I’m, you know, 35, I don’t have kids. Sounds kind of boring. I’m not really into the hayrides and corn maze thing.” Make sure that it’s audience and clientele appropriate.
7) HIRE A VIDEOGRAPHER AND A PHOTOGRAPHER
This is super important. Could you hire a videographer that is also a photographer, yes, but DO NOT hire JUST a photographer. The key thing here is the videographer. Make sure that they’re capturing everything because you’re going to blast the crap out of this on social media.
You’re also going to want to capture client testimonials, because now they’re there, you’re throwing them a party, and it’s a great time to get video testimonials from a client! If you’re doing this stuff and they’re having a great time and they’re going to be so happy. The videographer is going to show up and go “Hey! How did you start working with Travis? Tell me about that experience.” They’re going to give you the most glowing client testimonial you will ever get and now you have all these video testimonials.
Now what are you going to do? You’re going to post and share the pictures and the videos on social media. This is how you start getting more and more play out of that, and you’re going to tag everybody that’s there. You’re going to say, “Hey, thanks for coming, John & Mary! Here’s the picture of you guys and your family. Here’s the video that you guys recorded – thank you so much!“
**Note: this is a great tip for once you have an established client base. But, for your first client appreciation party, it may be an extra expenditure you can’t afford – be mindful of your bottom line. Plus, you can always ask a friend to come, cell phones can take good quality videos nowadays.
8) CREATE A CLIENT TESTIMONIAL VIDEO
Now put all of this together in a client testimonial video.Yes, you’re going to share these on social media, but now you’re going to create a very specific video that is just client testimonials. When are you going to use this? Before a listing appointment, anytime somebody reaches out to you, or when a new lead comes in. You can say, “Hey! I’m going to be reaching out to you. Here’s what it’s like to work with me. Here’s what other people have said.”
You can say all day long, “Look, my clients love me. They think I’m great, blah blah blah.” Everybody’s going to go, yeah, of course you say that, cause nobody’s going to say they’re kind of shady. But if somebody’s on video saying, “Hey, Travis is AMAZING. You know, he’s incredible to work with. He really took care of us through the entire process” do you think that’s going to go a long way in making a powerful impact on any lead that you’re trying to convert into a client? 100%.
And do you think most of your competitors have this? Absolutely not! It’s worth the investment. Make the investment. Have a videographer there and get those testimonial videos. Have them invite their friends. Get people having a great time, and I promise you, you will do client parties multiple times per year. You’ll have success with it. You’re going to love it. Clients are going to love it. You’re going to get repeat business. You’re going to get referrals from it. And you’re going to call me or you’re going to email me and you’re going to thank me. You’re going to say, “Travis, THANK YOU so much for making me do this, because it’s changed my business.“
- Get out your calendar and pick a date for your first client appreciation party. Does it matter that you are potentially new to the business or haven’t done many closings? Absolutely NOT! Pick a date, identify your invite list, and extend the invitations. By doing this you will commit yourself to seeing this through and reap the benefits of taking action.
- Watch: How to Throw a Successful Client Appreciation Party